Who Would I Be Without Instagram?

This is a fascinating and alternative perspective of what it has been like growing up online, especially social media. The story started for Tavi Gevinson when she was just 11-years old.

And yet the rapid-fire stage-mom math I performed in curating my various Instagram accounts was likely instrumental to the presentation of my authentic self that would eventually lead to branded-content deals, acting roles, and my career as I now know it.

Rather than some tamped-down impulse, my ability to control how I was seen, to know what to say (and when, and how), was maybe never switched off but an instinct like any other, dovetailing with the many conscious and unconscious decisions that made up all my acts of self-expression.

After all, I had been honing my shareability lens for many years before Instagram and already received much praise for “being myself.” Somewhere along the line, I think I came to see my shareable self as the authentic one and buried any tendencies that might threaten her likability so deep down I forgot they even existed.

It’s a powerful read — she captures the zeitgeist, the struggle, perfectly.